Beckham hopes to be fit for Real Madrid's tour to U.S.

July 31, 2006

MADRID, Spain -- David Beckham hopes to be fit to play in Real Madrid's preseason tour of the United States as he recovers from a knee injury sustained during the World Cup.

The former England captain said Monday he hoped to play in the Spanish club's friendly matches against DC United on Aug. 9 in Seattle and Real Salt Lake in Salt Lake City on Aug. 12.

"We'll have to wait and see because I only started running on Sunday without any pain," Beckham said on Real Madrid's Web site. "I have to take it easy because I want to be fit for the start of the season, which is the most important thing."

Beckham was hurt in the second half of England's quarterfinal defeat to Portugal on penalties on July 1. He then gave up the England captaincy.

Beckham said he was looking forward to playing with Ruud van Nistelrooy, his former Manchester United teammate who joined the club on Friday.

"He is one of the best goalscorers that I have ever played with, he scored many goals from me, and it was great to play in the same team as him at Manchester United," Beckham said. "I think that it is good for the team that he is at Real Madrid, and also good for him.

"Ruud is a goalscorer, that's what he does best. He runs for the team and he works hard. Every player is different, but Ruud has got a lot of talent and also works very hard."


Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press